Three anonymous witnesses have told Svenska Dagbladet that they have witnessed Crown Princess Victoria being sexually harassed by Jean-Claude Arnault, a Swedish cultural figure. The Royal Court does not wish to comment.
By – Laura Dekkers
For weeks now, newspapers in Sweden have been full of the crisis surrounding the Swedish Academy. Royal Central has reported earlier on this crisis. The background of it is a vote on one of its members, Katarina Frostenson. Her husband, Jean-Claude Arnault is accused of sexual assault and harassment. Therefore, some members of the Academy wanted to exclude Ms Frostenson by a vote. However, the vote ended in 8-6 in her favour. Because of this, three members have chosen to leave their seats.
Now three anonymous witnesses, who have spoken to Svenska Dagbladet, claim that one of Jean-Claude Arnault’s victims is Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden. Literature professor Ebba Witt-Brattström has confirmed the story to SVT. She was there when it happened and said Mr Arnault touched the Crown Princess on her behind. The event is said to have taken place during a meeting at the Swedish Academy’s villa at Djurgården in Stockholm.
In attendance were the various members of the Swedish Academy as was the Crown Princess’s father King Carl XVI Gustaf. Ebba Witt-Brattström, who confirmed the news to SVT,said: “It was so unpleasant, but her (the Crown Princess) adjutant intervened and snatched away his hand.”
According to two of those same anonymous sources, the Royal Court has since instructed Horace Engdahl, the Permanent Secretary of the Swedish Academy, to ensure that Crown Princess Victoria is never alone with Jean-Claude Arnault. The incident is said to have accured around 2006.
The Swedish Royal Court did not wish to comment on the incident. The Royal Court’s spokeswoman, Margareta Thorgen said: “Information on the cultural profile (Jean-Claude Arnault) that has emerged in the media is scary. The Royal Family has clearly demonstrated its support for the me too initiative. The specific story published by Swedish Dagbladet is not something I will comment on.”
The Swedish Royal Family has indeed been great supporters for the #MeToo movement. Crown Princess Victoria and Queen Silvia visited an event in November in which 210 actresses took the stage to read hundreds of anonymous testimonies gathered under the #MeToo hashtag online about female performers’ experiences with sexual harassment and assault in the theatrical world.
Crown Princess Victoria was reported saying: “It’s an extremely important campaign”.